homo, man, human being, human

(noun) any living or extinct member of the family Hominidae characterized by superior intelligence, articulate speech, and erect carriage

world, human race, humanity, humankind, human beings, humans, mankind, man

(noun) all of the living human inhabitants of the earth; “all the world loves a lover”; “she always used ‘humankind’ because ‘mankind’ seemed to slight the women”

man, piece

(noun) game equipment consisting of an object used in playing certain board games; “he taught me to set up the men on the chess board”; “he sacrificed a piece to get a strategic advantage”

Man, Isle of Man

(noun) one of the British Isles in the Irish Sea

man, adult male

(noun) an adult person who is male (as opposed to a woman); “there were two women and six men on the bus”


(noun) a male person who plays a significant role (husband or lover or boyfriend) in the life of a particular woman; “she takes good care of her man”


(noun) an adult male person who has a manly character (virile and courageous competent); “the army will make a man of you”


(noun) the generic use of the word to refer to any human being; “it was every man for himself”


(noun) a male subordinate; “the chief stationed two men outside the building”; “he awaited word from his man in Havana”

serviceman, military man, man, military personnel

(noun) someone who serves in the armed forces; a member of a military force; “two men stood sentry duty”

valet, valet de chambre, gentleman, gentleman's gentleman, man

(noun) a manservant who acts as a personal attendant to his employer; “Jeeves was Bertie Wooster’s man”


(verb) provide with workers; “We cannot man all the desks”; “Students were manning the booths”


(verb) take charge of a certain job; occupy a certain work place; “Mr. Smith manned the reception desk in the morning”

Source: WordNet® 3.1

Etymology 1


man (plural men)

An adult male human.

(collective) All human males collectively: mankind.

A human, a person of either gender, usually an adult. (See usage notes.)

(collective) All humans collectively: mankind, humankind, humanity. (Sometimes capitalized as Man.)

(anthropology, archaeology, paleontology) A member of the genus Homo, especially of the species Homo sapiens.

An male person, usually an adult; a (generally adult male) sentient being, whether human, supernatural, elf, alien, etc.

An adult male who has, to an eminent degree, qualities considered masculine, such as strength, integrity, and devotion to family; a mensch.

(uncountable, obsolete, uncommon) Manliness; the quality or state of being manly.

A husband.

Book of Common Prayer

A lover; a boyfriend.

A male enthusiast or devotee; a male who is very fond of or devoted to a specified kind of thing. (Used as the last element of a compound.)

A person, usually male, who has duties or skills associated with a specified thing. (Used as the last element of a compound.)

A person, usually male, who can fulfill one's requirements with regard to a specified matter.

A male who belongs to a particular group: an employee, a student or alumnus, a representative, etc.

An adult male servant.

(historical) A vassal; a subject.

A piece or token used in board games such as chess.

(Multicultural London English, slang) Used to refer to oneself or one's group: I, we; construed in the third person.

A term of familiar address often implying on the part of the speaker some degree of authority, impatience, or haste.

A friendly term of address usually reserved for other adult males.

(sports) A player on whom another is playing, with the intent of limiting their attacking impact.

Usage notes

• The use of “man” (compare Old English: mann, wer, wīf) to mean both “human (of any gender)” and “adult male”, which developed after Old English’s distinct term for the latter (wer) fell out of use, has been criticized since at least the second half of the twentieth century. Critics claim that the use of “man”, both alone and in compounds, to denote a human or any gender “is now often regarded as sexist or at best old-fashioned”, “flatly discriminatory in that it slights or ignores the membership of women in the human race”. The American Heritage Dictionary wrote that in 2004 75-79% of their usage panel still accepted sentences with generic man, and 86-87% accepted sentences with man-made. Some style guides recommend against generic “man”, and “although some editors and writers reject or disregard [...] objections to man as a generic, many now choose instead to use” human, human being or person instead.

This generic usage is still well-preserved in certain dialects, pidgins, and creoles of English, as well as fixed expressions and certain religious documents and declarations such as the Nicene Creed (e.g. "...for us men and our salvation..."). Consideration of this has often led to accusations of the critics of the generic man as enforcing linguistic prescriptivism.

• See also the man


• (adult male human): male; omi (Polari); see more at man

• (person): human, person, see more at person

• (board game piece): see board game piece

Coordinate terms

• (gender): woman

• (age): boy


man (not comparable)

Only used in man enough



Used to place emphasis upon something or someone; sometimes, but not always, when actually addressing a man.

Etymology 2


man (third-person singular simple present mans, present participle manning, simple past and past participle manned)

(transitive) To supply (something) with staff or crew (of either sex).

(transitive) To take up position in order to operate (something).

(reflexive, possibly dated) To brace (oneself), to fortify or steel (oneself) in a manly way. (Compare man up.)

(transitive, obsolete) To wait on, attend to or escort.

(transitive, obsolete, chiefly, falconry) To accustom (a raptor or other type of bird) to the presence of people.


• 'Nam, 'nam, AMN, MNA, N. Am., NAM, Nam, mna

Etymology 1

Proper noun


The genus Homo.

(poetic) Humankind in general.

Etymology 2

Proper noun


The Isle of Man.

Etymology 3

Proper noun


Abbreviation of Manitoba.

Etymology 4

Proper noun


A surname of Chinese origin.

Etymology 5

Proper noun


A surname of Chinese origin.


• 'Nam, 'nam, AMN, MNA, N. Am., NAM, Nam, mna


MAN (plural MANs)

(computing) Initialism of Metropolitan Area Network (a large computer network usually spanning a city)


• 'Nam, 'nam, AMN, MNA, N. Am., NAM, Nam, mna

Source: Wiktionary

Man, n.; pl. Men. Etym: [AS. mann, man, monn, mon; akin to OS., D., & OHG. man, G. mann, Icel. maedhr, for mannr, Dan. Mand, Sw. man, Goth. manna, Skr. manu, manus, and perh. to Skr. man to think, and E. mind. sq. root104. Cf. Minx a pert girl.]

1. A human being; -- opposed tobeast. These men went about wide, and man found they none, But fair country, and wild beast many [a] one. R. of Glouc. The king is but a man, as I am; the violet smells to him as it doth to me. Shak.

2. Especially: An adult male person; a grown-up male person, as distinguished from a woman or a child. When I became a man, I put away childish things. I Cor. xiii. 11. Ceneus, a woman once, and once a man. Dryden.

3. The human race; mankind. And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness, and let them have dominion. Gen. i. 26. The proper study of mankind is man. Pope.

4. The male portion of the human race. Woman has, in general, much stronger propensity than man to the discharge of parental duties. Cowper.

5. One possessing in a high degree the distinctive qualities of manhood; one having manly excellence of any kind. Shak. This was the noblest Roman of them all . . . the elements So mixed in him that Nature might stand up And say to all the world "This was a man! Shak.

6. An adult male servant; also, a vassal; a subject. Like master, like man. Old Proverb. The vassal, or tenant, kneeling, ungirt, uncovered, and holding up his hands between those of his lord, professed that he did become his man from that day forth, of life, limb, and earthly honor. Blackstone.

7. A term of familiar address often implying on the part of the speaker some degree of authority, impatience, or haste; as, Come, man, we 've no time to lose !

8. A married man; a husband; -- correlative to wife. I pronounce that they are man and wife. Book of Com. Prayer. every wife ought to answer for her man. Addison.

9. One, or any one, indefinitely; -- a modified survival of the Saxon use of man, or mon, as an indefinite pronoun. A man can not make him laugh. Shak. A man would expect to find some antiquities; but all they have to show of this nature is an old rostrum of a Roman ship. Addison.

10. One of the piece with which certain games, as chess or draughts, are played.

Note: Man is often used as a prefix in composition, or as a separate adjective, its sense being usually self-explaining; as, man child, man eater or maneater, man-eating, man hater or manhater, man-hating, manhunter, man-hunting, mankiller, man-killing, man midwife, man pleaser, man servant, man-shaped, manslayer, manstealer, man- stealing, manthief, man worship, etc. Man is also used as a suffix to denote a person of the male sex having a business which pertains to the thing spoken of in the qualifying part of the compound; ashman, butterman, laundryman, lumberman, milkman, fireman, showman, waterman, woodman. Where the combination is not familiar, or where some specific meaning of the compound is to be avoided, man is used as a separate substantive in the foregoing sense; as, apple man, cloth man, coal man, hardware man, wood man (as distinguished from woodman). Man ape (Zoöl.), a anthropoid ape, as the gorilla.

– Man at arms, a designation of the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries for a soldier fully armed.

– Man engine, a mechanical lift for raising or lowering people through considerable distances; specifically (Mining), a contrivance by which miners ascend or descend in a shaft. It consists of a series of landings in the shaft and an equal number of shelves on a vertical rod which has an up and down motion equal to the distance between the successive landings. A man steps from a landing to a shelf and is lifted or lowered to the next landing, upon which he them steps, and so on, traveling by successive stages.

– Man Friday, a person wholly subservient to the will of another, like Robinson Crusoe's servant Friday.

– Man of straw, a puppet; one who is controlled by others; also, one who is not responsible pecuniarily.

– Man-of-the earth (Bot.), a twining plant (Ipomoea pandurata) with leaves and flowers much like those of the morning-glory, but having an immense tuberous farinaceous root.

– Man of war. (a) A warrior; a soldier. Shak. (b) (Naut.) See in the Vocabulary.

– To be one's own man, to have command of one's self; not to be subject to another.

Man, v. t. [imp. & p. p. Manned; p. pr. & vb. n. Manning.]

1. To supply with men; to furnish with a sufficient force or complement of men, as for management, service, defense, or the like; to guard; as, to man a ship, boat, or fort. See how the surly Warwick mans the wall ! Shak. They man their boats, and all their young men arm. Waller.

2. To furnish with strength for action; to prepare for efficiency; to fortify. "Theodosius having manned his soul with proper reflections." Addison.

3. To tame, as a hawk. [R.] Shak.

4. To furnish with a servants. [Obs.] Shak.

5. To wait on as a manservant. [Obs.] Shak.

Note: In "Othello," V. ii. 270, the meaning is uncertain, being, perhaps: To point, to aim, or to manage. To man a yard (Naut.), to send men upon a yard, as for furling or reefing a sail.

– To man the yards (Naut.), to station men on the yards as a salute or mark of respect.

Source: Webster’s Unabridged Dictionary 1913 Edition


Word of the Day

23 September 2023


(noun) the act of constructing something; “during the construction we had to take a detour”; “his hobby was the building of boats”

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